25 July 2012

the taste of solvents

Greetings dear readers, today is the hottest day of the year so far (now that mister sun has finally showed his face he really does mean business).  The heat in the loft has been rising and has now become almost unbearable - a still, stifling HOT heat.

I was out and painting with great purpose this morning continuing progress with the '...RUGS&...' canvas: adding more rich, bright red, deep crimson and blackness, and daubing some verdant green into the background. Another step on the long road to completion.

Now that I've cleared the deck of 2 paintings, I feel I can crack on with some of those canvases that have lain around neglected for the past couple of months.  Does anyone remember this behemoth seascape I sketched out? It's up on the wall and is getting some much needed attention. It's good to have something new to sink my teeth into.

...And so, on the hottest day of the year, I sat in my sweat-box of a loft with absolutely no ventilation and decided to do something quite rash. This, ladies and gentlemen is how to bugger up a painting in one quick and easy lesson.

And in a bid to rectify it, I concluded the only course of action would be to pour half a bottle of white spirit down it and scrub it all off. I spent the rest of the sweltering afternoon with a sweaty mask clamped over my face to stop me getting drunk on the fumes, and giving myself cross eyes painting all the tiny flowers back in.

It utterly reeks in there and it made my head swim as soon as I took that mask off. Out in the still, slightly fresher air, the taste of solvents lingers on the tip of my tongue.

18 July 2012

the keen eye of the Wednesday Painter

I had a couple of hours' paid work to fulfil this morning, but with this out of the way I set upon my first task: re-taking those photographs I took last week.  The sky overhead is a blanket of silvery grey, so the light was right for some photos.

I am pleased to report that 'Home Sweet Home' still meets with my satisfaction, which gives me a number of choices of which canvas to werk on today.  I've opted for the '...RUGS&...' deep red neon painting, which is in its early stages and will give me something to set my mind to. Just as soon as I have eaten lunch.

It is 2pm. Let the painting commence!

3 hours later, and to the untrained eye not much has changed. But to the keen eye of the Wednesday Painter the last traces of the original pencil sketch have been more or less covered over.

And now I must go, only 3 hours painting is better then 0 hours painting. And I will fit in a much longer session next week.

11 July 2012

a spring in my step

I spent much of this morning cursing the sunshine for visiting on the one day of this grey, wet and dreary summer on which I had decided to take some photographs. In the rare moments when a cloud drifted overhead I snapped off a few shots with varying degrees of success.

The photographs are for a batch of slides I plan to make in preparation for some new non-neon paintings.

Job more or less done, I returned to add (what will hopefully be) the finishing touches to 'Home Sweet Home': just a little extra deep red glow to counter the diminishing green effervescence and a lick of purest white to brighten key points to both colours of neon tube, and I think I am just about happy with it.

I walk with a spring in my step for the rest of the day and toil away at the big Le Corbusier canvas, darkening all the little windows and alcoves with some dirty, inky water, and wondering how I should go about speeding up and finishing construction werk.

5 July 2012

existential ponderings

I've swapped shifts this week with the Thursday Painter.  The Thursday Painter is a man of few words. He keeps a blog somewhere in a parallel cyberspace, and his confessions usually amount to very little. It would be nice to be able leave him to carry on with my paintings the day after I have done my Wednesday Painting shift, but every time I return a week later I see very little sign of progress. Sometimes I wonder if he's taking my werk a step backwards, or undoing all the hard graft I have achieved the day before...

Sometimes I wonder if it is healthy to mull all this over inside my head and then spill it out into this weekly journal. But I tell myself that it gives me an aim each week and some kind of benchmark of progress with my creative endeavours, so I continue.

I set out today to bring 'Home Sweet Home' a big step towards completion.  The green neon rendering is still not to my satisfaction.  All morning I was there, painting away, knocking back the extended glow and bringing in the darkness. I werked on every area of the green bordering and finished for lunch.

On my return I realise that all my werk has been in vain. I scrub out the morning's travails...

This time I'll get it right, I tell myself.

Hours later, I leave more or less satisfied, and hoping this will still be the case when I return next Wednesday.